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Energy Efficiency

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NEWS
August 29, 1995 | By James M. O'Neill, INQUIRER TRENTON BUREAU
Consumer and environmental groups lashed out yesterday at a major New Jersey electric company that seeks to shrink its energy-conservation programs. But the utility says that, with a glut of cheap energy now available, such conservation programs are no longer cost-effective. Jersey Central Power and Light's proposal could foreshadow similar moves by other utilities in the region also seeking to capitalize on the lure of cheap energy from other parts of the country. Consumers would no longer receive discounts for limiting their use of appliances at peak energy times if the state Board of Public Utilities, which plans to decide on the plan by year's end, approves JCP&L's proposal.
NEWS
July 14, 2009 | By Katrina Schwartz
In their continuing efforts to balance the state budget, the governor and lawmakers are considering eliminating a program designed to help Pennsylvanians make their homes more energy-efficient. Given the need to help citizens through a difficult economy while also addressing climate change, the program should not be facing such a threat. The Keystone Home Energy Loan Program provides the only low-interest loans available to homeowners looking to reduce their monthly utility bills and shrink their carbon footprints.
BUSINESS
October 8, 1989 | By Robert S. Boyd, Inquirer Washington Bureau
John Downey, proprietor of the Silvercrest retirement home in Taunton, Mass., was visiting a friend's house in June. "What's that funny-looking light bulb?" he asked. He was told that it was a new kind of small, energy-efficient fluorescent lamp that uses 18 watts of electricity but puts out as much light as a 75-watt bulb and lasts 13 times longer, up to 10,000 hours. The Taunton Municipal Lighting Plant rents the compact "smartlights," which screw into ordinary sockets, to its customers for 20 cents a month.
BUSINESS
January 26, 2014 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
Once Marcelo J. Rouco decided on Philadelphia as the location for the North American headquarters of his Australian energy-efficiency firm, Ecosave Inc., he went all in. Last June, he paid $4.2 million for a small engineering firm in Bristol, DVL Automation, as a beachhead for his North American expansion. He also bought a Center City house and relocated his wife and two children from Down Under. "Australia is a great place, but a smaller market, only 21 million people," said Rouco, 44. "So I expect the North American office to generate a lot more revenue than the Australian office.
BUSINESS
May 2, 2013 | By Sandy Bauers, Inquirer Staff Writer
How many conservatives does it take to screw in a new lightbulb? More than if it were liberals. A new study out of the University of Pennsylvania finds that people who are more politically conservative are less in favor of investing in energy-efficiency technology. It turns out that they're likely to be put off by the environmental messaging. Which is ubiquitous. Energy efficiency has long been touted as a way to stall climate change. The federal government's Energy Star website promotes energy-efficient products by saying they will "save energy and fight climate change.
REAL_ESTATE
March 19, 1989 | By H. Jane Lehman, Special to The Inquirer
Congress is eyeing a plan to enable home buyers and renters to compare the energy efficiency of homes in an attempt to cut down on the use of fossil fuels that have been blamed for the greenhouse effect. But housing-industry officials say that the proposed numerical rating system would unnecessarily complicate the home-buying process - because utility usage information is readily available - and would raise the cost of buying or renting a home. The building labeling plan is part of broader legislation introduced in February by Sen. Timothy Wirth (D., Colo.
NEWS
October 29, 2004 | By Jeanne M. Fox
Energy policy has a profound impact on nearly everything Americans hold important. The right policy can mean job creation, a thriving economy fueled by affordable energy and technological innovation, a cleaner environment, increased security, and a foreign policy liberated from energy dependence. Today, Americans are coping with the repercussions of the wrong national energy policy. Families struggle to pay the rising costs of heating their homes and fueling their cars. Businesses absorb the economic impact of poor electric reliability.
BUSINESS
March 9, 2013 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
The benefits of energy efficiency are hitting home. Homes built in the last decade, despite being 30 percent larger than older dwellings, consume only 2 percent more energy on average, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The typical home built after 1999 consumed 21 percent less energy for space heating than older homes, according to EIA's most recent Residential Energy Consumption Survey. Improvements in the efficiency of heating equipment and better-insulated building shells accounted for much of the reduction, said James "Chip" Berry, manager of the residential survey, outlined Thursday in an EIA online newsletter.
REAL_ESTATE
March 3, 1996 | By Alan J. Heavens, INQUIRER REAL ESTATE WRITER
Scott Cannon is a history buff, so it didn't surprise his friends when he named his Delaware County development Yorktown 1781, for the decisive American victory of the Revolutionary War. But it's energy efficiency, not history, that's drawing attention to Cannon's houses these days. Yorktown 1781 Developers, of Boothwyn, was one of 15 builders nationwide to receive a 1996 EnergyValue Housing Award from the National Association of Home Builders Research Center in Upper Marlboro, Md. The awards, presented for the first time this year, are designed to recognize builders "who integrate energy efficiency into all aspects of their new-home production - from marketing and construction practices to energy performance," according to Christine Barber, a research center spokeswoman.
NEWS
September 9, 1990 | By SCOTT DENMAN
As the crisis in the Persian Gulf intensifies, the absence of a coherent national energy strategy becomes frighteningly evident with each ominous development. Just recently, President Bush called up the military reserves. The President's next step should be to unleash America's greatest - and safest - weapon against our crippling dependence on foreign oil: energy efficiency and renewable energy sources. America's current state of national energy insecurity was at least partially preventable.
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REAL_ESTATE
April 13, 2014 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
Whether they're looking at newly built or previously owned houses, all buyers have lengthy wish-lists. When choosing new, they have a virtually empty canvas on which to draw their dream homes, especially if money is no object. These days, however, it is an issue, even for higher-end buyers, said Carl Becht, vice president of sales for Vaughan & Sautter Builders in Wayne. "They are very cost-conscious these days and might not be as willing to go overboard" as they were before the economic downturn, Becht said.
BUSINESS
February 2, 2014 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
City Hall has a reputation as a prodigious producer of hot air. But the towering seat of government at Broad and Market Streets is not Philadelphia's biggest greenhouse-gas emitter. The Philadelphia Museum of Art and Perelman Building ranked as city government's top energy consumer, according to a new list compiled by the Mayor's Office of Sustainability. City Hall ranked No. 6. Twenty buildings in three sectors - offices and courts, prisons, and museums - consumed more than 60 percent of the energy used by 259 city buildings analyzed in the report.
BUSINESS
January 26, 2014 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
Once Marcelo J. Rouco decided on Philadelphia as the location for the North American headquarters of his Australian energy-efficiency firm, Ecosave Inc., he went all in. Last June, he paid $4.2 million for a small engineering firm in Bristol, DVL Automation, as a beachhead for his North American expansion. He also bought a Center City house and relocated his wife and two children from Down Under. "Australia is a great place, but a smaller market, only 21 million people," said Rouco, 44. "So I expect the North American office to generate a lot more revenue than the Australian office.
BUSINESS
January 7, 2014 | By Erin E. Arvedlund, Inquirer Columnist
Want to "green" your portfolio? You can invest in mutual funds that keep an eye on the environment by owning shares in companies that, say, treat wastewater used in the "fracking" of natural gas, one of Pennsylvania's booming industries. Pax World is just one of several mutual fund outfits that offers what's known as a "fossil fuel-free" mutual fund, one that includes investments in energy efficiency, alternative energies like solar and so-called low-carbon technologies. Joe Keefe, president and CEO of Pax World Management, based in Portsmouth, N.H., recommends "a multipronged approach.
NEWS
January 2, 2014 | By Sandy Bauers, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Jim McLaughlin first learned about federal efficiency standards for lightbulbs - and that incandescents would change or go away - he had but one thought: Stockpile! Two years ago, the Broomall resident bought cases of bulbs. Wednesday, as the final phase of standards kicks in, his inventory has lessened. But at age 71, he figures - and hopes - his bulbs will outlast him. "We have none of the new-generation bulbs in our house, and I plan to keep it that way," he said, adding not quite facetiously, "I'm a grumpy old man. I don't want anyone telling me what to do. " In nearby Wallingford, energy efficiency aficionado David Director is ecstatic about the new bulbs.
BUSINESS
October 17, 2013 | By Alison Burdo, Inquirer Staff Writer
More than two years after acquiring a nearly half-acre site at 16th and Moore Streets, LPMG Cos. aims to set a standard for green construction in South Philadelphia with reNewbold, a project that will include 16 rowhouses, two condominiums, and one retail space. Groundbreaking is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon on the project, for which LPMG will seek LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certification. The superinsulated homes will have triple-pane windows, low-flow faucets and showerheads, a rainwater-collection system, and green roofs among other sustainable features.
BUSINESS
July 28, 2013 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
The owners of 2,041 commercial buildings in Philadelphia have an initial Oct. 31 deadline to report energy and water usage at those facilities for disclosure online, city officials said Friday. The city's Building Energy Benchmarking Law, a 2012 law designed to make big buildings more efficient by forcing owners to think about how much energy their buildings use, mandated the reporting for sites with more than 50,000 square feet of indoor commercial space. "In order to make Philadelphia the greenest city in America and improve the city's energy efficiency and cost savings, we need to make a concerted effort across the city to reduce energy use in buildings," Mayor Nutter said in a news release.
NEWS
July 7, 2013 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Energy Efficient Buildings Hub, an ambitious Pennsylvania State University research venture that was hailed as a cornerstone of the Navy Yard redevelopment when it was founded in 2010, is in danger of getting its plug pulled. The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee has recommended Congress cut the hub's $22 million budget for the forthcoming fiscal year and order the Department of Energy to terminate the three-year-old program. The hub, which employs about 30 people, is funded almost entirely with federal money.
BUSINESS
May 2, 2013 | By Sandy Bauers, Inquirer Staff Writer
How many conservatives does it take to screw in a new lightbulb? More than if it were liberals. A new study out of the University of Pennsylvania finds that people who are more politically conservative are less in favor of investing in energy-efficiency technology. It turns out that they're likely to be put off by the environmental messaging. Which is ubiquitous. Energy efficiency has long been touted as a way to stall climate change. The federal government's Energy Star website promotes energy-efficient products by saying they will "save energy and fight climate change.
NEWS
April 25, 2013 | By Tom Johnson, NJ SPOTLIGHT
New Jersey is lagging in its efforts to promote clean energy and energy efficiency programs because of repeated raids on funding for the projects, according to environmentalists and industry advocates. Those concerns were underscored again Tuesday when the state Board of Public Utilities disclosed that it learned late last week that the Christie administration was planning to divert an additional $10 million in clean-energy funds to plug a gap in next year's state budget. That brings to more than $160 million the amount that may be appropriated from the program in the next fiscal year alone.
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